Sunday, April 18, 2010

goodbye, old friend

What an old friend my CRC book was during my college years. It is a reference book containing the values for trigonometric and logarithmic functions plus mathematical formulas and constants. It was the bible of mathematics and physics students. Mine was used often and shows the wear and tear of it. You can see that the spine on the book has been broken and is starting to come off. I got this book circa 1963 which would make this book at least 47 years old. The book was absolutely necessary to solve the mathematical and physics problems at the college level. This was in the time before calculators. What about multiplying and dividing without calculators? Well, that was done with a slide rule and I had several. By the way, the letters CRC stands for Chemical Rubber Company. I have no idea why a rubber company would publish a book like this.

Even after the advent of calculators, a CRC book and a slide rule was considered the poor mans calculator. I remember when scientific calculators cost around $350 when they first came out around 1970. Now the same scientific calculator sells for $14. But now it has come time to say goodbye to my old friend who went through college with me. It now lies in the recycle bin waiting for pickup. At least it will be made into something else. We have an orange recycle bin for paper products and a green recycle bin for plastic and metal containers. Have you ever had certain objects that are symbolic of portions of your life? So it was that the CRC book for me was a part of my college years and sometimes it is a little hard to give these up even though they no longer have any practical value. It is just the memories of the good times that it brought back when I would see it and pick it up. I have heard of the expression that “The good old days weren’t so good”, but sometimes they were good. And my college years for all of the trials and tribulations of them were definitely good. Have a nice day and the next time that you see something that invokes a memory from the past, pause and think about the good times for a moment. Lew

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